From massive drops to barrel rolls, it’s hard to match the rush provided by a well-designed roller coaster. Fortunately, some of the best amusement parks in the entire world are located in the U.S., so reaching new heights is only a quick bus trip away. If you’re itching to try out some new roller coasters, add these five thrilling theme parks to your travel bucket list.
1. Cedar Point
Dating back to 1870, Cedar Point in Sandusky, OH, is one of the oldest theme parks in the country. But don’t let its age fool you — the park has consistently updated its ride options to suit the adventure levels of the 21st century. In fact, there are 18 roller coasters on-site, along with a host of other adrenaline-pumping attractions.
When you step aboard the Top Thrill Dragster, prepare to have your breath taken away. The coaster goes from zero to 120 mph in 3.8 seconds, followed by a 420-foot vertical drop. While it can’t quite compete with the Dragster’s speed, the Valravn’s 90-degree, 223-foot drop and unique Immelmann loop are sure to hold your attention. Other notable coasters you won’t want to miss include the GateKeeper, Iron Dragon, Steel Vengeance, and Wicked Twister.
2. Six Flags Magic Mountain
Conveniently located just outside of Los Angeles in Valencia, CA, Six Flags Magic Mountain covers over 250 acres of land. If you want to know why it’s one of the most popular theme parks in the U.S., you only have to check the ride list. There are nearly 20 coasters in the park, and nearly every single one is designed to push riders to their physical limits.
Ready to get your heart rate up? Step aboard the X2. Along with loops, drops, and 360-degree rotating cars, the ride is designed with visual and auditory effects for optimal adventure immersion. Additionally, daredevils won’t want to leave before checking out Goliath, Tatsu, and Full Throttle, and CraZanity — the 75-mile-per-hour pendulum ride. The park is also preparing to open a new coaster dubbed WestCoaster Racers.
3. Silver Dollar City
Since opening in 1960, Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO, has become a staple for family vacations with its wide selection of wholesome entertainment, down-home cooking, and feel-good Americana music. But banjos and fiddles aside, the most recent roller coaster addition to the park has put it on the thrill-seekers map. The Time Traveler is setting new records as the “World’s Fastest, Steepest, and Tallest Spinning Coaster.”
The newly opened steel coaster features a dive loop, zero-G roll, and vertical loop, along with a vertical 10-story drop. If that’s not enough to alert your senses, the seat arrangement might. The coaster is designed with spinning vehicles, so riders enjoy the entire journey spinning 360-degrees — even on loops and drops. Other rides to catch at Silver Dollar City include Outlaw Run, PowderKeg, Wildfire, and the Giant Barn Swing.
4. Busch Gardens Williamsburg
Busch Gardens is known for creating a park full of adventure in the middle of beautifully lush foliage, and their Williamsburg, VA, location definitely hits the mark. While the park offers something for everyone, it truly caters to the adrenaline junkies in the family — making it a must-visit on your thrilling theme parks tour.
There’s a three-way tie for the top coaster spot at Busch Gardens Williamsburg. While both Griffon and Appollo’s Chariot feature speeds of over 70 mph, the Alpengeist offers six stomach-twisting inversions. The Tempesto also boasts incredible speeds and steep drops. If you’re a sucker for a good, old-fashioned wooden rollercoaster, step aboard the Invadr, which reaches a top speed of 50 mph.
Stretching over 400 acres, no thrilling-theme-parks travel guide is complete without mentioning Carowinds in Charlotte, NC. The amusement park boasts 14 roller coasters, including the Fury 325. Earning the top spot for height and speed among giga-style coasters, the ride boasts a 325-foot drop and speeds of 95 mph. The park also recently opened a double-launch coaster known as Copperhead Strike, which goes from null to 42 mph within 2.5 seconds.
Score Bus Ticket Deals to Thrilling Theme Parks Across the Country
Ready to reach new heights at any one of these thrilling theme parks? Start by booking travel through BusTickets.com. From price comparisons to purchasing tickets, our user-friendly platform makes every step of the process quick, easy, and convenient. We also offer charter bus quotes for thrill seekers traveling in groups. Don’t miss out on the adrenaline rush — buy your bus tickets today!